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First Dates - staff bios

Category: News Release

First Dates has returned, with a spruced up restaurant and an all new team of staff. Maitre d' Fred will be the first person each dater encounters at the restaurant. Barman Merlin will be on hand to settle any jitters with a calming word and a cocktail (or two). Waitresses Cici and Laura take down orders from the singletons on their blind dates, and keep an eye on the first flushes of romance.

Fred Siriex, 43 - maitre d'

- For eight years, Fred has acted as General Manager at Galvin at Windows, the Michelin-starred restaurant on the 28th floor of the London Hilton on Park Lane

- Born in Limoges, Fred moved to England 23 years ago to start his career as a Chef de Rang

- Fred is a true ambassador for the Hospitality industry and his passion is educating and promoting exceptional Front of House practice through his venture, The Art of Service

- He co-hosted with Michel Roux jnr. a BBC2 series all about service and hospitality

- Fred is a keen boxer and cyclist. He currently lives in Peckham with his partner and two children


Merlin Griffiths, 39 - barman
- Merlin has worked in the hospitality industry for nearly 20 years

- Bartending has taken him around the world. Along the way, he has won awards and accolades and was recently nominated for the Pub Personality of the Year

- He has his own pub in Kilburn where he merges the typical American tavern with the British neighbourhood pub

- He met his girlfriend of 10 years at a cocktail competition. He won. They have their first baby together who is just a year old


Cici Coleman, 29 - waitress
- Cici waitresses at Balans, a ‘gay-friendly’ restaurant in Soho
- The restaurant she works in often caters for first dates, of which she has lots of anecdotes and amusing observations


Laura Tott, 22 - waitress
- Laura has worked behind a bar and in restaurants for years

- She never studied but travelled broadly and describes herself as a graduate from the University of Life